Royals have done the right thing by reporting apparent hospital security breach, says minister

Royals have done the right thing by reporting apparent hospital security breach, says minister
Gabrielle Wilde

By Gabrielle Wilde

Published: 20/03/2024

- 11:30

Updated: 20/03/2024

- 11:50

There was a major Kate Middleton security 'breach' as hospital staff 'attempted to view private medical records'

Health Minister Maria Caulfield has said Royal officials have “done the right thing” by reporting an apparent security breach by staff while the Princess of Wales was a patient at The London Clinic in January.

She told GB News: “It seems there's been an instance that they have picked up, they've done the right thing. They've reported it to the Information Commissioner.

“Those restrictions and those safeguards are in place and they seem to have identified a problem and acted on it pretty quickly.

“The Princess of Wales has been pretty candid that she was having surgery and won't be in action until after Easter. I want to respect that and don't really want to speculate on her individual case.

“But just to reassure patients up and down the country that these rules are in place for everyone and if there is a breach of those that will be investigated by the Information Commissioner and your healthcare regulators will also take action against individuals who breach those rules.”

In a discussion during Breakfast with Eamonn Holmes and Isabel Webster, she continued: “It is against the rules to be looking at patients notes if you're not involved in their care and if you don't have their permission.

“These are pretty strict rules that have been in place for a long time and that it crosses across all sectors in hospitals and communities and settings.

“They are pretty strict rules for a reason because these are people's confidential notes. And so my nursing regulator, the NMC would certainly investigate any breaches by nurses, but these are pretty sensitive data for anyone and that's why those rules are in place.”

She was also asked about a bill that will be introduced in Parliament today to reduce tobacco smoking and restrict the sale of vapes to children.

Caulfield said: “The legislation that we're bringing forward does include measures on vaping as well. It's already illegal to sell nicotine based vaping products to children, but there is a loophole and manufacturers have created flavoured vapes instead which don't have nicotine, but we don't necessarily know the safety profile of those vapes either...

“We don't want children to start on a path of vaping because our motto is, ‘if you don't smoke, don't vape’ and children should never vape because we are not 100% sure about the long-term safety effects of vaping overall.”

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